Monday, September 17, 2012

Dare to be Different - Mahl Kita

Used by Permission by
The biggest problem with being different is that you, just by being different, fly in the face of what everyone thinks is right and what they expect from you.  Most of the time, being different is considered being wrong, and causes overt and direct attacks as well word of mouth and rumor attacks.  It almost never causes success in the world, unless it answers the question, "What's in it for Me."

In the west, what's in it for me means $$$ most of the time.  Nothing wrong with $$$, but if that is not your goal, your mission, your calling from God, then whatever your calling is, is not going to go over so well with the population at large most of the time.

This is my story about being different.

In the early 80's, which you might know already if you have read Dark Well of Despair - Light of Hope, I fell off a bicycle and sustained a Traumatic Brain Injury.  Up unto that point, I was 3 credit hours from getting my Masters in Physics, though I had temporarily abandoned that path, I was a fairly successful life insurance sales person in a team with my wife, and I had a 2 year old daughter.  Life was good, and I was rolling in money.

That stopped when I hit my head.  I nearly lost my house, with one of those can't get if from anyone else emergency mortgages.  If just so happened that the bank I had originally borrowed from was being bought out, and the loan officer was attending the same church we were attending.  I knew there was a God, and that it was important to be seen going to Church in our community, but I had not idea who God was.  Seems he knew who I was though. The load officer called my wife, and said my credit rating was horrible, since I had not paid any bills since my injury, at least 6 months earlier.  He was going to rewrite the loan anyway, and pay for the second mortgage, the water pump that just blew up, and the unpaid mortgage, because "it was going to be the last good thing the bank would do, before it went under."  At the time, I had no idea that was God.  I was so drugged out on pain pills, and well over 100lbs heavier than I was 6 months earlier, I was only aware of my own pain.  I did not really know we were losing our house.  My wife was dealing with that.  Seems God was helping her.

I was told that I could sue the state, since they mis-aligned the sewer grate that flipped me over, but I was also told that I was possibly partially responsible.  I was on the bike.  So I would only get $200,000.  Never entered our minds after that though.  Why?  Because my wife was different.  If I was responsible, then I would pay for it.  So we did.

We owed over a 1/4 of a million in debt, not counting the house, which a year earlier was not an issue, but now that I was messed up, could not think, was in pain, and was never going to come out the other end, all that debt was oppressive.

My house was falling apart.

My income had fallen apart.

I was going down, and I was not born for failure.  I tried to kill myself. That was a call out to God, though I would have denied that at the time. I was reaching out of my despair and he reached out and grabbed ..... no, not my hand.  That would have been too freaking easy.

My daughter was found by God when she was 8ish, and by the time she was 15ish, God had found me too.  Turns out he had found my wife decades before. Anyway, that changed everything.  Everything.

Now, getting rid of the debt, anyway we could, was not the priority.   Paying the debt was.  I borrowed it, so I was going to pay it back.  Different.  But that is what the spirit told us to do.  So we did it.  It took us until my daughter graduated from college.

Eventually my Disability Insurance agreed to pay.  My doctor told me to learn karate.  I broke every window in my house in anger.  Life was just getting weird.  The neurologist was right though, but for a reason he never would have predicted.  Turns out I am a gifted teacher.  Since we were now following the Spirit when ever we knew what was being asked of us, we discovered I could give back to the community by helping others defeat their issues.  After all, I was never going to work again, but I could teach karate.  We tried to pay me, but every time we even talked about it, I got ill, so the doctor, my wife decided they were right.  I would never work again, yet I could give back.

We were different.  We teach karate not to make money, but to help others.  We always have, since we started.

What was the reward from the world?  My insurance company stole my insurance payments from me, and two years of my life, as they tied to steal much more.

Some students, though a small percentage, can't understand what's in it for me, so they vocally accuse us for all sorts of strange stuff.  Why?  Because we are different.  I have never been paid, and never will be.  I don't do it for the money.  I could not do it for the money if I wanted to.  I do it for the students, because that is what I do for God.  I use his gifts to give to his people.

The worldly reward have not yet arrived.  Only more difficulty, but God's rewards have been outstanding.  Let me list a few.

1)  I am not supposed to be married anymore.  No one with my injury is.  I am.  God 1 Point. (Well, ok, 1,000,000 points, but no one would understand that scoring.)

2) I get to teach karate and at the same time, all the values that God has taught me.  The Bible is a living book, and I get to pass it on, to everyone.  God gets another point.

3) I get to teach Sunday School, when crowds in stores, outside, or anywhere near me make me ill, but he has again surrounded me with people, like at karate, that understand, and help me help others.  God gets another point.

4) I Lost all my physics.  I can't even add 2 digit numbers.  I gained teaching.  God gets another point.

5) I have had financial set back after financial set back, and the people around me and my family for the most part have stepped in and helped us help others.  God gets another point.

6) I got to go on a mission trip with my family and a few close friends.  We taught karate and God in the Philippians.  God gets another point.

7) As dumb as it sounds, I have 5 cats.  They love me.

6) I have the best adult daughter in the world.  Period.  I will fight you over that.

My wife, my daughter and I dare to be different.  Why, because it takes different this day and age to follow the Lord, but Love is Love.  We have it. We share it.

So, I beg you, Be like the apple at the front of this blog.  Be Different for the Lord.

Mahal kita.

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